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What LNG Can and Can’t Do to Replace Europe’s Imports of Russian Gas

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Global LNG Demand Will Keep Growing: Tellurian Chair
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A crucial part of the European Union’s plan to wean itself off Russian energy is to greatly increase purchases of liquefied natural gas from other producers. But the EU isn’t yet equipped to receive enough of the fuel to replace Russian gas entirely. What’s more, there’s only so much LNG for sale on the global market, leaving European countries battling with big Asian buyers such as Japan and South Korea to secure the supplies they need to get through the colder winter months. 

The places where natural gas is found are often hundreds or thousands of miles away from where it’s used in power plants, factories, refineries and homes. It can be moved relatively cheaply by land through pipelines, but only to fixed points. Over the past six decades, a multibillion-dollar industry has developed to cool the gas to minus 260 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 162 degrees Celsius), at which point it changes into a liquid that can be loaded aboard refrigerated ships and sent across the globe. At the other end, it must be received at a specially built terminal where the fluid is converted back to gas.